The Swiss love carrots. Each one of us eats 8.5kg of carrots per year. And it’s no wonder, as carrots can be grated, steamed, pureed or stewed, which makes them a versatile ingredient in the kitchen.
Carrots work well with cabbage and apple. Grate all three ingredients finely to produce a lovely winter salad you only need enhance with a sauce made from yoghurt, a little lemon juice and some nuts. You can use hazelnuts, walnuts, pistachios or even peanuts, which have a more intense flavour. If you don’t like cabbage, use beetroot instead. Carrot cake proves how well the vegetable works with aniseed and cinnamon. And if you want to try something new, add a few coconut flakes to the icing.
The orange carrot is by far the most popular, but earlier varieties – such as white, yellow and violet carrots– have again been cultivated in greater numbers in recent years. While white carrots are unrivalled in soups, orange carrots are a highly versatile and the violet variety (which is fact more recent) adds a great splash of colour to your dish. Darker carrots contain more beta-carotene, which is transformed into healthy vitamin A in the body. And given their sugar content (up to 10 %), they are suitable for roasting in the oven. This allows the sugar to caramelise and leaves the vegetable as tender as butter. If you buy ingredients the same colour as carrots then you’ll end up with a very beautiful looking dish on the table. How practical!
For a starter that’s full of vitamins, take two orange peppers, halve them and remove the seeds, then peel and halve five carrots and mix everything together with some olive oil, salt
and pepper. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes at 220 °C. In the meantime, peel an orange and a clementine and cut into thin slices. Arrange the vegetables while still warm with the citrus fruit, sprinkle with coarse chunks of fresh goat’s cheese and chopped hazelnuts and dribble some sherry vinegar and olive oil on top.
Whichever variety of carrot you choose, you can use the following recipe to prepare a carrot salad that serves as a lunch dish for two. Lightly roast ½ teaspoon of coriander seeds in a frying pan for around 1 minute. Leave to cool then grind coarsely. For the sauce, take half a clove of garlic, chop it finely and mix with 3 tablespoons of lemon juice, some chilli flakes, 80ml of olive oil and some salt and pepper. Julienne 500g of peeled carrots finely and add to the sauce. To finish, mix in some freshly plucked Italian parsley leaves and a few roasted pistachios or walnuts. Serve with some crispy bread and bon appétit!